God’s instruction to Noah to “be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth” is an invitation for all humanity to cooperate with God in the ongoing creation of the world. We are not to be idle bystanders simply watching the mystery of the kingdom of God unfold. As Christians, we help to make that kingdom a reality. God wants us to make this world reflect the glory of the world to come—so we have definitely got our work cut out for us.
Building the kingdom is no easy job. Every day, we encounter some of the terrible realities that are part and parcel of a fallen world; I could list them all, but we’d be here all day. Part of filling the earth means dirtying ourselves a bit as we address these issues. We can’t build a just and fair society simply by wishing it could be so, we must work for the common good.
Even though we all have a role to play in the conversion of our society, we are not all called to the front line of the battle against injustice and inequality. Even the hermit, or the person sick in bed, who never, or rarely, sets foot outside is a co-creator with God. Whenever we try to fulfill the commandment of love, we build up the kingdom of God. Whenever we nurture those we know and love so that they become light and salt to the world; when we share the good news of the Gospel with our neighbours and strangers; and when we pray for the needs of our brothers and sisters. If offered to God, even our most insignificant actions can reveal his kingdom.
Empowered by the Holy Spirit, we answer God’s invitation to cooperate with him in the building up of his kingdom, by using the unique gifts and talents he has given us. In this way, we can all make this world better. That was God’s vision when he first created us, and it’s still his vision today. Let’s believe that his power, working in us, can accomplish anything.